• 04 Octubre 2013 - 05 Octubre 2013
  • Paris
  • Venue: Sorbonne



    Friday, 4 October: Sorbonne, amphithéâtre Lefebvre:

    Entrance: 1, rue Victor Cousin (Sorbonne Square), Staircase/Escalier R, Galerie Jean-Baptiste Dumas

    Saturday, 5 October (CHANGE OF VENUE!):Sorbonne, amphitéâtre Cauchy:

    17, rue de la Sorbonne, Staircase/Escalier F, Galerie Richelieu



    Conference languages: French and English (simultaneous translation)



  • International Conference
  • Rosa Luxemburg’s Concepts of Democracy and Revolution

  • One of the most important contributions of Rosa Luxemburg to modern Marxist thought is her refusal to separate the concepts of “democracy” and “revolution”. This approach is developed in a) her criticism of the limits of bourgeois democracy, b) her conception of the revolutionary struggle as democratic self-emancipation of the great masses, c) her vision of socialist democracy with the workers’ councils’ system as a possible form of “dictatorship of the proletariat”, and d) her firm insistence – in discussion with Russian revolutionaries – on the importance of democratic freedoms in the transition towards Socialism.

    The conference will deal with the question of democracy in her writings on Marxism, on political economy and on the national question (self-administration and national autonomy as democratic solutions).

    These are issues that remain relevant at the beginning of the 21st Century. The aim of the conference will be not only to analyze the historical aspects and the texts themselves, but also the political significance of these issues, in an epoch that sees a crisis of democracy within the context of crisis in capitalist civilization.

    Conference organised and supported by:

    • International Rosa Luxemburg Society
    • University of Paris I Panthéon-La Sorbonne/Centre d’histoire des systèmes de pensée moderne (CHSPM)
    • Espaces Marx
    • Rosa Luxemburg Foundation
    • Gerda und Hermann Weber Stiftung
    • transform! europe
    • Collectif Smolny
    • Actuel Marx
    • Journal Contretemps


Friday, 4 October

Sorbonne, amphithéâtre Lefebvre

3pm – 5:30pm:

Panel Discussion 1:Presentation of New Editions of Rosa Luxemburg’s Work in German, English, and French

Jacqueline Bois (France), Peter Hudis (USA), Annelies Laschitza (Germany), Holger Politt (Germany/Poland), Eric Sevault (France)

5:30pm-6:30pm: informal reception

6:30pm-7pm: Opening of the Conference

Presidency:   Elisabeth Gauthier (France)

Welcome speeches: Narihiko Ito (Japan), Evelin Wittich (Germany)


Panel Discussion 2:  Development and Aspects of Luxemburg's Socialism Concept [7pm – 9pm]

  • Rory Castle (UK): Rosa Luxemburg, Her Family and the Origins of her Revolutionary Outlook
  • Isabel Loureiro (Brazil): Rosa Luxemburg, démocratie et révolution
  • Mylene Gaulard (France):Rosa Luxemburg face aux possibilités de réformes démocratiques du capitalisme : Bernstein et Keynes
  • Michael Löwy (France/Brazil): « Le coup de marteau de la révolution ». La critique de la démocratie bourgeoise chez Rosa Luxemburg
  • Claudie Weill (France): Nation et démocratie


Saturday, 5 October

Sorbonne, amphitéâtre Cauchy

10am – 12:15pm: Panel Discussion 3:Socialism and Democracy

  • Michael Brie (Germany): Socialism and Democracy. The critique of the bolshevists by Rosa Luxemburg reconsidered  
  • Jean-Numa Ducange (France): Le socialisme français vu par Rosa Luxemburg
  • Ottokar Luban (Germany): Creativity of the Proletariat as the Crucial Key Word for Rosa Luxemburg’s Concept of a Revolutionary Socialist Mass Movement
  • Pablo Slavin (Argentina): Democracy and Revolution at work of Rosa Luxemburg,
  • Feliks Tych (Poland) :La réputation de Rosa Luxemburg dans science historique et public  général de Pologne après 1989

12:15pm – 2pm: Lunch break

2pm – 4:15pm: Panel Discussion 4: Bourgeois Democracy, Revolutionary Democracy

  • Sobhanlal Datta Gupta (India):Evolution of Rosa Luxemburg's concept of Revolutionary Democracy in the light of her Gesammelte Briefe
  • Michael Kraetke (UK/Germany): Rosa Luxemburg et la critique de la politique
  • David Muhlman (France): Le contenu de la « démocratie socialiste » chez Rosa Luxemburg 
  • Ingo Schmidt (Canada/Germany) :‘The Accumulation of Capital’ – Economic Underpinnings of Rosa Luxemburg’s Democratic Socialism
  • Jörg Wollenberg (Germany):Rosa Luxemburg and the “Freedom of Dissenters” - About the background and consequences of the "Complete Edition" of the "Russian Revolution” of Rosa Luxemburg in Paris 1939

4:15pm - 4:45pm: Break

4:45pm – 7pm: Panel Discussion 5:Rosa Luxemburg and Others

  • Philippe Corcuff (France): Rosa Luxemburg, la radicalité et la démocratie : John Dewey et André Gorz comme vis-à-vis
  • Frigga Haug (Germany):  Attempt  to follow Rosa Luxemburg’s footsteps in fighting for democracy from the base
  • Alexey Gusev (Russia) : Rosa Luxemburg and the problem of institutional foundations of socialist democracy in the history of Marxist thought   
  • Ben Lewis (UK): “Is that our programme, Karl?” Luxemburg, democracy and the challenge of the German Revolution  
  • Sandra Rein (Canada) : Re-reading Rosa Luxemburg’s Theory and Practice as a feminist text

Please find the programme (pdf) on the right at "Documentation"